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N.C.

NC court frees taxpayer money to private schools

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Advocates for using taxpayer money for tuition at private or religious schools have new hope after North Carolina's Supreme Court removed a lower judge's order blocking the program's start this fall. The high court on Wednesday said the program could go ahead while lawsuits are being debated in court. Full story...
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Minister pleads guilty to kiddie porn charge

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A Wayne County minister has pleaded guilty to receipt of child pornography in federal court, the US Attorney's Office says. Full story...
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McCrory unveils $21B NC budget for next year

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Gov. Pat McCrory and his top budget writer are focusing on what's not in his North Carolina government spending proposal for the coming year as compared to what's in it. Full story...
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NC legislature starts this year's session

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North Carolina lawmakers are back at work as this year's legislative session has opened in Raleigh. People unhappy with the General Assembly's right-leaning direction have returned, too. Full story...
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Health mandate coverage clouds NC session opening

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North Carolina lawmakers returning to Raleigh have reached an early impasse on disputed legislation surrounding autism insurance coverage as the first gavel on this year's session fell. Full story...
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Top NC Senate GOP leaders introduce coal ash bill

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Two top Republicans in the North Carolina Senate have introduced a bill to curb the threat of pollution from coal ash dumps, three months after a massive spill at a Duke Energy plant coated 70 miles of the Dan River in gray sludge. Full story...
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Hagan seeks to help historically black colleges

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US Sen. Kay Hagan is introducing a bill to strengthen the nation's historically black colleges and universities. The measure would create a program of competitive grants that would help fund innovative programs addressing the specific needs of students at black colleges. Full story...
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Report highlights child labor on US tobacco farms

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An international rights group says children as young as 7 are working long hours in US fields harvesting tobacco under sometimes hazardous and sweltering conditions. The Human Rights Watch report released Wednesday details findings from interviews with more than 140 children working on farms in North Carolina, Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia. Full story...
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Durham VA Medical Center workers placed on leave

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Two employees at the Durham VA Medical Center are on administrative leave for what officials call inappropriate scheduling practices. Full story...
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NC to consider new e-cigarette tax

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The Republican-dominated North Carolina General Assembly will consider a new tax on electronic cigarettes. A panel that studies tax matters recommended Tuesday that the proposal be introduced during the legislative session that starts Wednesday. Support is coming from an unlikely source in tobacco giant Reynolds American, based in Winston-Salem. Full story...
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Aiken praises primary opponent Crisco after his death

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"American Idol" singer Clay Aiken praised the North Carolina entrepreneur who died as he trailed him in a too-close-to-call Democratic primary for a Congressional seat, saying Keith Crisco never forgot his humble beginnings. Full story...
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NC governor wants ID before jobless benefits

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Gov. Pat McCrory says the unemployed should be required to show photo identification in person to receive North Carolina jobless benefits. Division chief Dale Folwell says most young people already are required to show a photo ID to their employer when they start their job. Full story...
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Victims of NC eugenics program file claims

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A North Carolina agency is reviewing claims of people who have previously identified themselves as victims of the state's forced sterilization program so they can verify their eligibility for one-time payments from a $10 million compensation fund. Full story...
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NC judge weighs order blocking teacher tenure law

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Public school teachers are asking for quick action from a North Carolina judge to block a law taking effect this summer that eliminates more than 40 years of job protections in favor of employment contracts. Full story...
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Voter rights group says match does not mean fraud

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A North Carolina voter rights advocacy group is warning against using states' voter lists to establish whether fraud is happening. Democracy North Carolina announced the names of four state legislators Monday whose first name, last name and date of birth match active registered voters in other states. Full story...
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